Latest food industry analysis
Comprehensive coverage of the food industry's latest, breaking news brought to you by just-food's leading network of international journalists.
Twelve chocolate and cocoa companies, including Nestle, Mondelez International, Hershey last week announced plans to work together to "end d...
General Mills this week reported another quarter of falling sales, leading industry watchers to wonder if the US food giant will lessen its...
Nestle, PepsiCo, Unilever and Kellogg are among the companies to have signed up to a global initiative aimed at improving food sourcing, red...
Brazil-based private-equity group 3G Capital grabbed the FMCG industry headlines in February with Kraft Heinz's ultimately unsuccessful play...
February saw Wal-Mart signal an acceleration of the price war brewing in the US grocery sector, while discounters Aldi and Lidl continued to progress their own agendas in the country. Tesco's steady improvements in the UK continued and the group revealed plans to further adjust its staffing strategy. Here are some of the highlights from the world of grocery retail over the past month.
Less than three days was all it took for Kraft-Heinz's GBP112bn (US$139.1bn) takeover approach to Unilever to become public, be rejected and subsequently be taken off the table. The attempt is likely to have some significant and far-reaching consequences for Unilever. Here, just-food takes a look at the impact the episode could have on the Dove-to-Knorr manufacturer.
It was Maple Leaf Foods' first major acquisition for over a decade and one very much in tune with one of the key trends in the North American marketplace. The Canada-based meat giant has become the latest in the sector to invest in the growing meat-free industry, snapping up US firm Lightlife Foods. Dean Best looks at the deal.
Danone focused much of its presentation at this week's Consumer Analyst Group of New York conference on its plans for the US. The French group generates around 13% of its sales in North America and believes there is ample room to grow. Danone also touched on its goals for 2020 and its cost-cutting drive and last week's move to "decouple" the group's aims to improve efficiency and increase sales. Here are the eight key takeaways from the event.
General Mills last week lowered its already weak forecast for its annual sales due to lower-tha-expected sales in US yogurt and soup. Unsurprisingly, then, the US food giant's efforts to reinvigorate its top line were the primary focus of its presentation at this week's Consumer Analyst Group of New York investor conference. Here are just-food's key takeaways from the event.
Kraft Heinz's takeover bid for Unilever came as something of a shock today – not least because of the seeming unlikely pairing of the 3G Capital-owned US group with the European food-to-personal care company. just-food asks whether the takeover offer should be taken at face value.
Announcing's Nestle 2016 results today (16 February) newly-installed CEO Mark Schneider revealed growth at the Swiss food giant came in below expectations. All eyes are now on Nestle's direction under Schneider, who joined the business at the start of this year. Will there be a greater focus on margin enhancement? Has Schneider totally abandoned the 'Nestle model' targeting 5-6% organic growth each year? Could large-scale acquisitions or disposals be on the cards? Katy Askew investigates.
Kellogg's decision to end the direct store delivery (DSD) of its snacks in the US is expected to give the company's profitability some momentum, with the Cheez-It owner saying the move would leave it better placed to grow revenues from that part of its business. However, the Pringles maker faces an uphill challenge to turn around declining sales trends. Katy Askew reports.
Mead Johnson has been the subject of takeover talk ever since it was spun-off from pharma group Bristol-Myers Squibb in 2009. Today's (10 February) news that the board of the US infant formula business has backed a potential sale came as little surprise - but what has raised eyebrows is the seemingly unlikely source of interest, UK condom-to-cleaning product provider Reckitt Benckiser. Katy Askew looks at the potential deal.
Mondelez International has delivered a lacklustre set of 2016 numbers but the snacks giant, which has been buffered by a challenging operating environment, stressed it continues to improve adjusted operating margins. With the entrance of 3G Capital into the food sector, margins have become a key metric for a number of the major names in the industry but Mondelez's results left some wondering if a focus on margins can hamper top-line growth. Katy Askew reports.
Hershey's 2016 results and 2017 outlook, issued on Friday (3 February), suggested both a stronger finish to the year than the preceding nine months had suggested and confidence on this year's earnings above that seen on Wall Street. Nevertheless, analysts still had questions on Hershey's earnings expectations, on its performance in China and on its plans for its cost structure. Dean Best reports.
The opening month of 2017 saw a raft of notable developments at some of the major names in the foodservice channel. Dean Best analyses the latest goings-on at three: DineEquity, Yum China and Shake Shack.
The UK government has now provided a clearer idea of its objectives for the Brexit negotiations. Ben Cooper looks at where Theresa May’s "12-point plan" leaves food companies within the UK and beyond its borders.
Cloetta, the Swedish snack maker, reported a loss for 2016 this morning (1 February) primarily due to an impairment charge related to its Italian business. Speaking to analysts during a conference call, however, management was upbeat on the progress it has made in strengthening profitability. Cloetta said it hopes to continue to expand its margins over the coming 12 months and revealed that it wants to grow sales – both organically and through M&A – during 2017. Here are the key takeaways from Cloetta's 2016 results.
Almost five years after Bright Food snapped up a majority stake in Weetabix, the state-backed Chinese group is said to be looking to offload its shares in the UK-based breakfast cereal business. Speculation started before Christmas and, although Bright Food sought to cool the chatter, the rumours have intensified, with four bidders apparently preparing to table offers. Dean Best surveys the purported runners and riders.
January saw the shock announcement UK retailer Tesco wants to acquire the country's largest wholesaler, Booker, in a deal that looks set to ruffle feathers in the sector. Carrefour investors speculated over who could be next to head-up the world's second largest retailer. Meanwhile, in the US, retail giants Wal-Mart and Amazon announced job creation plans. Here are some of the highlights from the retail sector over the past month.
Unilever delivered sluggish sales but stronger-than-expected margins when it reported its full-year results today (26 January). The company's revenue was buffeted by issues like demonetisation in India and economic crisis in Brazil during the tail-end of 2016. While management believes such headwinds will lead to a slower start to 2017 - an outlook that hit Unilever's shares today - the group does expect things to pick up as the year progresses. just-food take a look at Unilever's strategy for growth this year.
The pressure on Aryzta has grown this week after the Switzerland-based bakery giant issued a surprise profit warning, sending its shares tumbling and sparking speculation about the future of the company's senior management. Dean Best reports.
In part two of his survey of the food policy areas to watch worldwide in 2017, just-food's contributing editor Ben Cooper runs the rule over the likely developments in Latin America, Asia and Australia this year.
A new year, re-heated M&A speculation. Takeover talk is again centred on US-based infant formula group Mead Johnson, often seen as a target since it was spun off by pharma group Bristol-Myers Squibb in 2009. In the past, the chatter has focused on whether Danone would buy the Enfamil maker. Now, Nestle is in the spotlight. However, as Dean Best reports, such a deal looks unlikely - and, at present, the prospect of other suitors coming in appears just as slim.
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